Usability study of a Web-based mental health self-referral tool in a sample of people with depression and anxiety disorders

The Web has been an incredibly transformative tool but not everyone has equal access. Though much has been done to increase access to the Web for people with physical and sensory disabilities, very little attention has been given to people with mental disorders.

Help us work to ensure the Web’s benefits for you and others affected by mental disorders. Continue reading below to learn more about the study and to get involved. Participants will be compensated.

Participant Information

Please read this information carefully before deciding whether to take part in this research. If you are happy to participate you will be asked to digitally sign a consent form.

ERGO Study ID number: 23276

What is the research about?
The study hopes to evaluate the usability of a Web-based mental health self-referral service. This will later inform studies and practitioners concerned about improving usability for people affected by depression and or an anxiety disorder.

Why have I been chosen?
All persons over the age of 18 living in the UK and diagnosed with depression and or anxiety by a doctor are invited to participate. Participants must be without sensory or physical disabilities that require the use of adaptive or assistive technologies to operate a computer system as well.

What will happen to me if I take part?
The study involves completing 4 short tasks on a website and afterwards being interviewed about your experience using the site. Sessions will last for approximately 45 to 60 minutes with one 5-10 minute break as needed. Interviews will take place at a place and time agreed with you in advance.

Are there any benefits in my taking part?
Participants will be compensated with a £10 shopping voucher for their involvement. You would also be making a crucial contribution towards improving the Web experiences of people with depression and anxiety. You can receive an executive summary of results if you so desire as well.

Are there any risks involved?
There are no foreseeable risks involved.

Will my participation be confidential?
Yes, every precaution will be taken to maintain confidentiality of your data. Collected data will be stored on the password protected devices. Only authorised persons on the research team will have access. Data will be stored for 15 years and will be destroyed after this time. The study will be compliant with the Data Protection policy of the School of Psychology, University of Southampton and the Data Protection Act (1998).

What happens if I change my mind?
Your participation is voluntary. You have the right to withdraw at any time and for any reason without your membership or legal rights being affected. However, we will not be able to identify and delete your submitted responses as your participation will be anonymous.

What happens if something goes wrong?
If you have a concern or complaint you may contact: University Research and Governance Office, University of Southampton, Southampton, SO17 1BJ. Phone: +44 (0)23 8059 5058, email

Where can I get more information?
If you have any further questions about the studies, please email Renaldo Bernard at

Thank you very much in advance for your time and help. It is much appreciated.

Proceed to screening